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Department of Education and SIYAC sponsor youth forum

"Youth in Action for a Healthy Iowa"

For the 2nd year, SIYAC and the Department of Education’s Team Nutrition are partnering to host the “Youth in Action for a Healthy Iowa” symposium. Teams made up of students and administrators from high schools across the state are expected to attend with the goal of gathering useful information on what high school students feel could impact their health habits in their schools and in their communities. Students will identify effective strategies to improve healthy school and community environments, which could help prevent rising rates of obesity. Stay tuned as plans are made for the symposium. Site Launched

Promotes Summer Employment Program and Opportunities

DES MOINES – Iowa Workforce Development (IWD) officially launches the Web site to promote the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) youth summer job program. The statewide summer employment program provides Iowa youth with an opportunity to develop the essential skills needed for successful employment.

The summer youth program is open to individuals 14-24, who are considered low-income, and meet one of the following points:

Additionally, if the individual is eligible, he must register with the selective service and the qualifying youth participant must be a US citizen, national or legal immigrant.

Spaces will fill up quickly throughout the state, and Iowa youth interested in the program may register online or contact their local site directly.

Forum for Youth Investment invigorates Iowa

On May 7th the Iowa Collaboration for Youth Development co-sponsored Governor Culver's dropout prevention summit, aimed at creating urgency and developing action plans to respond to the dropout crisis of minority youth in 16 Iowa communities. Karen Pittman traveled to Des Moines to facilitate a panel of young people talking about the supports they need to graduate high school and the challenges they face. Steve Michael reported, "the youth panel really hit home the importance of students having positive relationships with adults, schools being flexible, and adults recognizing that youth are dealing with more than just school issues. The challenge is for communities and the state to change the 'business as usual' approach and develop action plans that provide opportunities for students to be successful." Karen also presented data on why high school graduation is a key step to getting kids ready for college, work and life.

View Karen's presentation. Also, the Forum has developed a planning guide to inform the development of dropout prevention summits; download the guide. On May 8, Karen traveled to Mason City, IA where she delivered the keynote at the first annual Adolescent Youth Workers Summit, kicking off Mason City's participation in the Ready by 21 Quality Counts Initiative. In addition to speaking to over 100 youth workers and community leaders about the importance of improving the quality and reach of youth programs, Karen met separately with 40 community leaders to discuss how they can collaborate to advance and sustain this work. Amy Croll said, "The Summit reaffirmed the need to take a big picture approach to change outcomes for youth. The Ready by 21 framework invigorated key local and state leaders to do business differently, and they left excited to develop comprehensive plans to address youth issues in their community."